Greetings fellow food and drink enthusiasts, mini-fridge mavens and otherwise generally hungry folk.
Welcome to my new column, Bread and Butters – where I explore a well-known restaurant, food product, or recipe (the “bread,” which is, after all, one of humanity’s oldest and most popular foods) and add, find or create what I call the “butters” – new tastes, perspectives and uses. You know, the good stuff.
For my first article, I wanted to give you a recipe that was inventive, playful and incredibly delicious. I was up against stiff competition, namely the donut burger, the pierogi dog and the deep fried oreo – palatable giants in the experimental food world. But with an empty stomach, a college student’s pantry and a little help from Pinterest, I give you…pizza pancakes!
Now some of you may be thinking “genius” – I know – but there may be skeptics out there and for that reason I have created a short pizza pancake self-assessment below.
You will enjoy pizza pancakes if you answer “yes” to one or more of the following questions:
Have you ever woken up for breakfast and wanted something other than the typical breakfast foods?
Do you order pizza on a regular basis or live behind a pizza shop?
Have you ever found yourself wondering whether 3 a.m. is too late for dinner or too early for breakfast?
Do you like cheese?
Now that we’ve established the champions from the picky-eaters, let’s get to the cooking.
Only six ingredients are necessary for this recipe, all of which I consider to be kitchen staples and whose brands are irrelevant. They are: pancake mix, pizza sauce, shredded cheese, minced garlic, crushed red pepper flakes and pepperoni slices – or whichever toppings you happen to have lying around.
(Adapted from noblepig.com)
Place a greased skillet on the stove at medium-high heat.
For the batter, mix the correct amounts of dry pancake mix and water, according to the package directions. I used 1 cup of dry mix to ¾ cup of water, which yields about 6-8 pancakes. Stir 1 cup of shredded cheese, 1 teaspoon of red pepper flakes and 1 teaspoon of minced garlic into the batter. Set aside.
If you have yet to grease your pan, now is your last chance before the fire alarm will go off and your whole building will resent you. Place 1 tablespoon of cheese on your greased skillet, which should now be hot. This will immediately begin to melt and turn into the crispy morsels you pick off of a slice of pizza and eat first. Pour a ¼ cup of the batter on top of the cheese once it begins to melt. Add your toppings of choice and flip the pancake once the bubbles on the batter side have burst. Cook the remaining side until it turns a golden-brown color and transfer it to a plate. Repeat as desired and serve hot pancakes with pizza sauce.
The result is a light and fluffy pancake that tastes like cheesy garlic bread in all the right places – no grease-blotting napkins necessary – and is cheaper and faster than delivery. Mind you, I live in an apartment with a standard kitchen, but you can always give it a worthy go in the residence hall community kitchens or Boozel’s waffle iron station. Mmm…waffles.
If there is one thing that inventive recipes like the donut burger or even pizza pancakes can teach us, it’s to not be afraid of food. It doesn’t bite you. You bite it…except on the occasion of eating too much Mexican food, in which case that habanero burrito can most definitely bite back.
Until next time, butter lovers.